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JEE main result poses conundrum: Students get higher marks and lower percentile score

Durgesh Mangeshkar, who has written to the National Testing Agency seeking a reassessment of the situation, said it was essential that the base used for percentile calculation in the January exam and September exam must be similar.

Written by Alifiya Khan | Pune | Updated: September 13, 2020 10:25:53 am
GSEB SSC supplementary resultGujarat Board 10th Result 2020: Check SSC supplementary exam result now. Representational image/ file

Even as the result of September JEE Main, which was announced on Friday night, brought cheer to many city students, some experts pointed out a flaw in the calculation of the result percentile score.

As many students couldn’t appear for the examination in September due to the Covid-19 pandemic, experts said that the percentile calculation for the exam was done using a lower base of about 65,000 students per slot, whereas the January exam percentile calculation was done with a much higher number of students, nearly 1 lakh per slot.

“Due to this, students who increased their marks even to the extent of 40 marks in the September exam still found their percentile score now lower than the January exam,” said Durgesh Mangeshkar, a expert in the field of education.

He cited the example of one of his students, Saniya Patwardhan, who scored 152 marks in the January exam and got a 99.06 percentile, and scored 196 marks in September exams but scored only 98.7 percentile. While her marks increased, the percentile dipped.

Mangeshkar, who has written to the National Testing Agency seeking a reassessment of the situation, said it was essential that the base used for percentile calculation in the January exam and September exam must be similar.

“A difference of over 35,000 students in base has caused huge discrepancies, lowering the September exam percentile drastically. They should rationalise it,” he said.

“Many students didn’t turn up for the second JEE Mains due to the pandemic… in the first mains, if a student was ranked 5th in a group of 100, then they get 95 percentile. In the second mains, 50 students didn’t turn up, but of these, say 49 are poor performers and just one was a top student. Eventually, for the same performance, the same student will get fourth rank in the group of 50, with the percentile dropping from 95 to 92,” said Lalit Kumar, CMD of Prime Academy.

Kumar said a better way of marking would have been to give an absolute score by ensuring the same level of difficulty in both exams, comparing the scores, and making a final merit list.

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